You would winterize your home by covering up in layers and preparing for the winter. Preparing is only half of the battle.
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Driving in winter conditions requires that you drive differently. You must be prepared for snow and ice.
Most people will have a full wardrobe of winter coats and boots by the time winter hits. Make sure you’re as prepared for winter as possible by making sure your car is.
Your life could be saved by learning how to safely drive through snow and ice, and getting your car ready for winter.
This article will tell you how to prepare your car for winter.
Preparing for winter driving
Bring your car to a mechanic for the following inspection: Battery Antifreeze level, thermostat, heater Brakes Defroster.
- Make sure that your tires are properly sized. Replace worn treads. You can also exchange the treads for Bridgestone Blizzaks snow tires, which offer better traction and are capable of handling extreme winter driving conditions.
- Take a look at the lights in your car. Check that the rear and front lights work, particularly the flashing hazard lights.
- The windshield wiper fluid can freeze in winter. You don’t have to wait for spring to replace the fluid.
- You can also buy winter wiper blades that cut through snow and other ice, instead of regular wipers throughout the year.
- Make sure to inspect the spray nozzles on your windshield washer system. Sometimes they can become blocked by debris or wax. To clear blocked nozzles, use a pin or needle.
- Your car’s paint can be damaged by road salt, which is common during winter. It is possible to rinse it off once in a while, but a good washing with a coat of wax will help prevent corrosion and keep your car looking new.
Packing Your Car for Winter Trips
Winter accidents can leave you stranded on the sidelines. You can keep your car safe and prepared for any conditions that may arise on your trip by packing a few essentials.
- Ensure that the gasoline tank is at least half-full throughout winter. This will reduce condensation and make it easier to start your car on cold mornings.
- You should always charge your phone and take it along with you. You can also keep a car charger for your phone in your car.
- Keep a shovel and/or snow/ice scraper in your car. Another essential item you should have is a first-aid kit. You will need to have all the essentials plus extras such as flashlights, batteries, blankets and matches. Granola bars and peanuts are great carbohydrate and protein-rich foods.
- Rear-wheel-drive vehicles may need to have a bag of sand in their trunk in order to provide traction underneath the tires in case they get stuck. The engine is what makes up the bulk of a vehicle’s mass. The car can slide on icy roads if it is driven by its rear wheels rather than its front.
- For maximum visibility, make sure you clear your car before you leave. Make sure to check your roof, hood, head, and taillights. It may take a little longer, but it is better than having to deal with an accident because of poor outward visibility. You and others around you may be in danger if there are any ice fragments left on your roof or hood.
Learn how to keep your eyes on the road when it becomes dangerous, and what to do if the road is blocked.
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Driving Tips for Icy and Snowy Roads
According to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), car accidents are the leading cause of death in winter storms.
It is essential to practice defensive driving. It could make the difference between getting stuck in the snowbank and reaching your destination safely.
- Listen to the radio before you leave for road closures or accidents. If this information is not on the radio, call your local highway patrol.
- To avoid dangerous roads during bad weather, plan your route in advance. Do not continue if a road is blocked or closed.
- You should let someone know your route to ensure that if you get lost, your family can inform authorities.
- Bridges and overpasses can freeze first. Avoid sudden changes in speed and direction.
- When driving, use gentle impulses: slow down, accelerate slowly, and stop quickly. You should leave enough space between your car and the next one to avoid unexpected, sudden movements that could cause you to spin. You should anticipate turning, stopping, and lane changes before they happen.
- Don’t go too slowly. To push through heavy snow, the car will need to have some momentum.
- Avoid trucks. Trucks are heavier than cars, and require longer stopping distances. Your visibility will be further impaired by their tires, which can spray snow and rain in parallel lanes.
- You don’t need to be too confident if your vehicle has fourwheel- or all-wheel-drive. Although the traction and force generated by four wheels instead of two can help you move from a halt, it does not improve your vehicle’s braking abilities. AWD and 4WD-equipped vehicles weigh more than 2WD vehicles, and take longer to stop.
- Be seen. During rain, snow and fog, always keep your lights on.
Winter Car Accidents
Winter driving can be dangerous and unpredictable due to conditions like snowstorm whiteouts that reduce visibility and ” black ice” which is a layer of ice formed by snow melting and then freezing again. To maintain control, you should be careful and not react too quickly if you are in a skid. If you are using an automobile with antilock brakes (ABS), your brakes will automatically pump for you in a skid situation. The brake pedal should be pulsating. For cars without ABS, you can apply light pressure to the brakes by pumping. These safety tips will help you remain calm in the event of an accident.
- As far as traffic is possible, try to stay on the right side.
- Keep your seatbelt fastened in your car. Turn on your hazard lights so that others can see you.
- Use a flare to draw attention to your vehicle if it is available. An antenna can also be attached to a bright piece or cloth.
- Avoid getting stuck in the snow by straightening your wheels and slowing down. Avoid turning the tires and digging deeper. To get out of your rut, rock the vehicle back-and-forth using its momentum and weight.
- To keep warm, you can run the engine for a few seconds if you are unable to get started. To get fresh air, crack a window periodically. To ensure that harmful carbon monoxide fumes do not drift through the car’s interior, keep the exhaust pipe free of snow.
FEMA and AAA recommend that you stay off the roads when the weather is dangerous in your area. You, your passengers and other drivers on the road can be put at risk by not knowing how to navigate your vehicle through winter storms.
You can keep your vehicle safe and on the road by getting it ready for winter.